Manifest Secret

woman s index finger on her lips
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As I tell us my story of you,

The tension of your omnipresence spills

All over the tangible world

Like a child splattering its wholesome glory

Over a ripe canvas.

Everywhere I am,

You are —

For the trees to breathe in,

For my father to hear my giddy delight,

To guffaw with my friends,

For you to oust my secret stories

Out of the woodworks.

For the mountain-tops

To rejuvenate the air

And draw a portrait

Of you.

The ripple has ceased,

Longing has eased —

One of those dilly-dallying days

If I think of you again,

I need only spread my tendrils

And grin.

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The Truth About “Artists”

I’ll try to make this quick because I have homework to get to, but first I thought I’d let you know something. Also because it’s coffee hour for me after attending college in the city all day.

“Poetic.” “Aesthete.” “Artistic.” These are the terms others have dubbed me. I get it — I am working for a degree in the humanitarian sector of the workforce. When I’m doing homework, my mind is trying to cobble up a tap dance choreography to an invigorating jig that I can perform in front of an awestruck crowd. I stare at beautiful pictures of models and actors like they’re paintings from the Louvre. I will literally stop in the middle of a walkway to observe the cherry blossoms fall above me, and I stand like that for hours. Any heartbreak takes me months to get over. And if I’m not actually writing poetry, I wax poetic to my exasperated sister on the way home from college on how my crush looked at me the wrong way today or how I’m surrounded by idiot NPCs every day who should really go to Safeway to buy ingredients for a better life, or how I sobbed my way out of my latest existential crisis or how no one likes me, or if they do, they aren’t substantial enough, or…

No, I get it. Labels are superficial, and while I don’t take them seriously, I realize this much about myself. I can’t live life without observing it through aesthetic lenses.

But what I also previously assumed about myself…is totally wrong. I used to think that aestheticism enables me to find beauty in  everything.  That means finding beauty inside of people, not just in obscure models whom I don’t even know personally. I thought being an aesthete would make me a good judge of personality.

Wrong.

I’ve noticed a pattern every time I fall in love, whether on real live people or whether it’s on models. All my objects of affection…they’re all physically beautiful in some way. Otherwise they have a tendency to look a lot like me. Ask my friends — they’ll tell you that the pictures of them stashed on my phone have the same haircut as me, same facial as me, same fashion statement etc.

That’s right — I’m a narcissistic bastard. Mum wasn’t wrong when she said she noticed a high percentage a poets she knew in her life based much of their craft on themselves.

Isn’t it ironic, then, that as much as I bemoan guys for calling me beautiful when they express their interest in me, appearance is the #1 factor for me that piques the most significant amount of interest towards someone?

And look, I’m not saying that appearance shouldn’t be an important factor in choosing your friends or life partner. It is. But when I examine my own judgements of people, I realize that I overestimate the quality of people when they’re beautiful just for being beautiful while I vastly underestimate their inner qualities. Of course, I do my best to find out who people really are inside.

But let’s be real: I have a wayyy higher favorability bias towards beautiful people at first sight than if they weren’t. Don’t even get me started on last year when I had multiple nervous breakdowns because I saw someone absolutely gorgeous on campus when I haven’t even met that person. Really wreaked havoc on my mental health. If that’s not an extreme case of bias, I don’t know what is.

Bottom line? I glorify beauty, but how much is too much? At what point does glorifying appearance became superficial, especially when my object of affection looks a lot like me?

I don’t have the answer to all these questions since I’m still figuring myself out. I just thought I’d let you know that artistry comes with a darker side. Trust me, I know. I’ve been heartbroken many more times than I could count because “aesthetically beautiful” didn’t live up to my standards. It’s common sense to not judge anyone by their looks, but why I still can’t stop lusting after physical appearances, I don’t know.

I’m not saying all aesthetes have such tendencies, or non-aesthetes aren’t going to go gaga over the next sexy lady in their frat circle. But I know who I am, and I can attest this lived experience to you.

As I like to say: want to know whether someone is a narcissist? Ask them if they’re a poet.

 

 

 

 

Flux

pink petaled flowers closeup photo
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I caught the glorying gaze of a cherry blossom tree;

Its fortune told me the future of my hearting flame.

I inhale its preening scent of beautiliciousness

And throw it to the sky,

Sky,

Sky…

 

I saw you. Then.

You didn’t even spare me a sympathetical glance.

Please don’t hate me now. Hate me later.

All I need is an understanding while I cry,

Cry,

Cry…

 

Because

view of dark hallway
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A moment in the interlude of infinity,

My thoughts flicker over to you —

I think a pixie sprite wrapped

Its spindly slender antennas around my heart

And emitted warm pulses through my quivering veins.

A whiff of burberry once again

Uplifts my head into the air

As if it’ll snag my chin and kiss me down

To the barren strips of my soul.

My neck aches from craning at each footstep

In each desperate hour.

Perhaps another day, then,

I’ll hear your voice

Sweet as bubbling milk with honey.

You say your lines to-do,

but your eyes ask,

“Why this hicktown stranger?”

Well,

Because…

Muse, My Muse (Edited Version)

silhouette of girl during evening
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Edited because I turned it into a more authentic version of a sonnet — one that contains iambic pentameter and a volta. This was assigned to me last semester for extra credit, so I took my previous poem and tweaked it into a bona fide sonnet. 

***

There was a magic in the wind tonight

Toned with a majestic violin strain

As her wild heartbeats join under the rein

Of its ruler, descendant of the night.

Her footsteps so bare and so light — so light!

For dreams in which I’m once more free and fain,

I long to catch and keep you, though in vain…

Suddenly she’s out of mind, out of sight.

…And night comes anon, but please do not yet depart.

There’s a fog-screen incoming — I’m seeing

A tale of my life, and you play a part.

You embody my evening throes of art,

For who else created your nymphic being?

Pixie, you snuck your way into my heart!

Pipe Dream

orange petaled flower
Photo by Evie Shaffer on Pexels.com

 

The air weans in partings of a summer breeze

But nay if it hasn’t swept in a lovelorn fear, or some,

At which I gaze in disconcerted ease.

*

It’s cold here. It’s cold here. I keel, then I’m numb;

That only you’d lie your love onto me — that I’d fain

In a frenzied season’s past, a past my pain is from.

*

One flitting thought, a thousand strolls purged in vain;

‘Tis the consequence of your haunting face,

So sweet my perfume smells like pain.

*

What now? No fear, no sense, no rush, no pace,

My game carried on in unlimited breadth;

I can’t wait forever, but I can’t win time’s race.

*

And so, my eyes faded in recurring death,

I pass you my final requiem on the fog of my breath…

What I’d Only Do

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I got some phlegm to clear up, folks.

*****

I’d bring you flowers everyday.

Compliment you everyday.

Pay both our expenses everyday,

because I’m just that way.

Cuddle with you.

Put my head on your shoulders.

Clasp your hand to my cheek.

Stroke my fingers up your delicate throat

and around your face

and cup the nape of your neck

as I nudge your face right in front of mine,

till our noses are touching and we’re

devouring each other’s presence

in wide-eyed wonder.

 

And then…

 

my lips would slowly,

cautiously,

close onto yours and

inhale a deep breath from yours

that reaches deep into my lungs

and across my tippy-tops and toes

and quake my starving soul

like a cup of mead

spilling its wholesome glory

over you.

 

I also want to feel your pulse.

You know that?

And hear your heartbeat when I

lay my ear onto your chest

and hug your knee closer to mine own,

maybe caress it

because it’s spindlier than the rest.

 

You just have to let yourself let me. 

 

 

Yours,

Yeah, the comma after the end of the title isn’t a mistake. 

Tried to make this one a variation of the Petrarchian sonnet.


Laced with heart’s wild and warm-blooded

Hymns of praise and pure,

Stray thoughts spurt like a fountain top,

And all its sweetly pleasures do they rain.

You’re warmer than blood,

Closer than flesh,

I wish to the Aether each day afresh

That your revelation was not in vain.

*

Every spirit of the living air,

Every mirage holds a light

To your ghostly countenance

And breathes life into me anew.

It shimmies down my veins

Into yearnful elations

As I utter you my finest proclamations:

“Can I keep you?”

Magnum Opus

silhouette photography of woman with shoulder length hair
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Cartoonish caricatures of fishies are

floundering in my periphery

while my clone lies sprawled under

scrutinizing starlights.

She’s writhing,

pining.

O my love,

what did I just do to you

in those milliseconds, grains of

an existential high

infecting the air?

I’d nurse you

Like a mother and her squalling child.

But I’ll send another

in my midst,

nary knowing that

the one who watches over you

like God and his Book of Life

is me.